You’re a new entrepreneur who wants to make a good impression on your business colleagues and clients. But you keep getting stumped when certain words pop up in conversation. This happens to the best of us, but fortunately, it’s an easy thing to remedy.
We have compiled a list of the most popular terms in business. By studying this handy resource, you can be sure to clearly understand others while knowing what you’re talking about. Plus, you’ll sound smarter when you use some of these terms in your everyday vernacular.
21 Business Terms for Entrepreneurs
- Entrepreneur – This is someone who starts their own business. Entrepreneurs are typically go-getters who have a passion for making things happen. The entrepreneurial spirit sometimes causes people to take big risks in order to ensure that their vision is seen through to completion.Take a moment to search for some of the most popular entrepreneurs. You will often find a common theme among them, such as dropping out of school to pursue their dreams. While this clearly isn’t the right move for everyone, entrepreneurs tend to make their own rules and are often successful for doing so.
- Venture – A project or business idea that is often deemed risky. Business ventures come in all shapes and sizes. When you have a venture that you wish to pursue, there is often risk involved because you need to seek out investors to help you get your idea off the ground and running.
- Profit – Personal gain in the form of money or assets. Many entrepreneurs will take big risks to ensure that their business sees a profit. Retail business owners likewise work hard to ensure that their company sells a lot of products.That said, there is more to making money than just selling goods and services. You need to be sure that you successfully position your business to where you aren’t losing money in other areas. It’s a fine line, but when balanced correctly, that’s when you see a profit.
- Startup – A business or enterprise that is newly established. Every successful business entity begins as a simple startup. After marketing their business and growing their client base, startups gradually become leaders in their respective industries, with some growing faster than others.
- Investor – An individual or team that provides the monetary assets needed for a small business or project to get off the ground. Investors provide money with the sole purpose of earning a stake in a company and making a sizable profit.
- Accelerator – An entity that supports or promotes the growth of small businesses. These organizations exist to help startups grow their brands at faster rates. This comes in the form of investments, marketing, and sales tactics designed to attract new customers and clients.
- Incubator – Organizations that exist to provide office or operating space dedicated to new startup businesses. Many successful corporations that you see today started in an incubator, growing their business in the process.Once they are able to sufficiently provide for their own space, the now successful startup business owner will often break free from the incubator and purchase a larger, customized establishment. How soon this takes place depends on the rate of speed of the venture’s growth.
- Networking – Connecting with individuals and entities in or out of the same industry to further establish a business’s footprint and reach. Networking helps to build relationships so that more growth can occur.
- Copyright – An exclusive legal right needed for a business or entity to use or reproduce material, whether it is musical, literary, or artistic. As a small business owner or freelancer, it is essential to your success that you protect your brand with copyright.Doing so prevents others from stealing your work, whether it be company logos, jingles, etc.
- Patent – An authorization or license that is granted to an inventor. A patent prevents others from stealing your inventions. As an inventor, it is imperative that you patent your work as soon as possible, as this can help you avoid legal issues.For example, someone may have been working on or designing a product or service similar to yours. As long as you have a patent for your work, it will carry some form of protection.
- Trademark – Officially-registered words, logos (symbols), or phrases that are used in the development of an organization. By trademarking such things, you can be sure that your components are original and unable to be reproduced or used without your consent.
- Side hustle – A slang term used to describe a secondary, often less profitable, business venture. A good example of a side-hustle would be if you sold cars for a living but taught guitar lessons in your spare time (with the guitar lessons being the side hustle).
- Risks – In the context of business, risks refer to uncertain ventures that are often backed by monetary investments. Investors often take risks with new business startups, as they can’t be 100% certain that the money they are providing will ultimately result in profit.
- Launch – To release a product or service; open a company for business for the first time. Also applicable to careers. When you launch a business, for example, you are unveiling your company to the public, such as for sales.
- Pitch – To share your business idea with a potential investor. A business pitch is often a pivotal moment for entrepreneurs. Oftentimes, the pitch is the most important step, as it must be delivered in a way that secures the financial backing from an investor.Without a successful pitch, you risk losing your shot at taking your idea to the next level. Many excellent business ideas have been lost to poor pitches, so it is essential that you practice your pitch thoroughly prior to meeting the investor. Doing so will ensure that there are fewer snags and that you’ll be able to answer all or most of the investor’s questions.
- Associate/Business partner – The other person responsible for running your business. Many successful companies are composed of more than one owner. And if you required an investor to help you get your idea off the ground, they are considered your business partner.
- Outsourcing – This is when you obtain goods or materials from a source that is outside of your business. Outsourcing is a common practice that can be used for the financial benefit of a business. Many shoe companies, for example, outsource production to save money on labor.
- Strategic alliance – When two organizations work together for the good of their brands or to complete a specific task or goal. Sometimes referred to as “synergy,” it harkens back to the old adage, “Two heads are better than one.”When powerful forces combine, such as two industry leaders, much more can usually be accomplished, and on a much larger scale.
- Capital – Money or assets earned in a business. There are different types of capital, such as operating capital. This is money specifically set aside for the growth of the company. Startup capital is money or assets used to start and grow a business.Many new business startups don’t have adequate funding to reach the goals needed to get their business off the ground. This is why investors are so important for many new business owners. Investors foot the bill for the capital so that a business has a chance to be successful, thereby earning the investor considerable profit.
- Venture capital – Some investors provide capital to businesses that involve considerable risk. Venture capital is often much less secure than typical capital, as there are fewer guarantees that the investment will pay off in the end.
- Lender – When a small business owner requires additional capital to sustain their company, they will often seek out a lender to loan them money. As with any type of loan, this money needs to be paid back, often with interest.The interest rates associated with the lender depend on the amount of the loan and the credit of the borrower. Those with a higher credit score can usually look forward to more reasonable terms, as they have a good report for managing their assets.
Now that you know which terms are commonly used in business, you can be sure to better understand your colleagues and clients. Try practicing one new word each day by using it in your everyday conversations.
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